Dear reader, let me talk to you about letter writing and self reflection.

A fun fact about me: I write. A LOT.

You probably know that already, because you know, you're here, reading this. But I don't just write what I publish. I write things that I would never post online, including poems and letters. I have mentioned before about letter writing. The funny thing is though, I write letters that I never send, and I have done for years. 

I actually laughed out loud when the film "To all the boys I've loved before" was released on Netflix, because I was so similar to Lara Jean in that way. Over the years, I have written an abundance of letters, not just to people I have "loved before", but to friends, old and new, family members that I do and don't see, amongst others. Whenever I really want to tell someone something - without actually telling them, I'll write them a letter. Sometimes a physical letter, sometimes ones typed and saved onto my computer. I am thankful though - that as of yet - not of the recipients have actually you know, received their corresponding letter. That would create a huge mess, and I am pretty sure it wouldn't end happily like it did for Lara in the film. 

So why? I hear you ask. I write people letters that they will never read because it is therapeutic. It is a form of therapy for me. It takes a weight off my shoulders and a lot off my mind. It gives me a sense of closure, to have all my feelings well articulated on a page, so accurately describing how I feel or felt in that exact moment. 

It is always interesting reading them back. My feelings and emotions were INTENSE at the time of writing, so everything feels rather dramatised. I know that it isn't though, you know, over the top. I know that in that exact moment, I was feeling that way inclined, so even if things have changed, months or years later, my emotions were 100% valid.

Letter writing, as well as it being therapeutic and also a way of recognising other people's actions, it is a form of self reflection. It is a great way to acknowledge what you may have or have not done, a way of admitting fault which you might not have seen at the time, or a way to understand how you can improve, and work on yourself after an event took place.

I don't write letters straight away/in the moment as such anymore. I used to, but then when I would read them back, I realised that was totally not how I felt, and I was just really caught up in the moment. It is so important to allow yourself time to process emotions, because how you feel on the day of say a break up, argument, negative experience for example, is rarely going to be the same as you feel say a week or so afterwards. It is essential to go through the motions, "feel what needs feeling" (one of my favourite quotes) and truly, with an open, yet clear mind, self reflect.

I am doing a lot of self reflection at the moment and let me tell you, it is good for the soul. Self reflection doesn't just have to involve yourself. I find it so useful to talk through situations with my best friends, including speaking about times when I, myself was wrong and times when I could have done something differently, as this way it is much easier to see the bigger picture, and when discussing it with people who know me the best, they can advise on how I could improve or how they believe things could be handled.

Whether you want to write letters or just stop and think for a second, you will find the perfect way to self reflect. Some of my favourite ways are of course letter writing (listening to music at the same time can be fun!), people/world watching (go and find yourself a window seat!) or taking myself on a date to a coffee shop (eating cake of course) and allowing life to go by whilst I just take a minute.

There are plenty of ways to self reflect - or meditate in a sense. These actions can be described in several different ways, and for everyone it is a unique experience.

I hope you find this post insightful, and I hope it encouraged you to self reflect. Without self reflection, we can't grow as people. We need the time to take responsibility for our actions, as well as being aware of others, as well as exploring our needs for self (and peer) compassion. Empathy, for the people around you, but yourself is key. Just remember, you may get frustrated, when thinking about yourself or others in this way, but it is the first step to creating the best version of you, for you, and for those you love.


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